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My 26 month old has never slept through the night = breakdown about to happen

(8 Posts)
SupSlick Thu 25-Dec-14 16:36:54

I'm a single parent & have somehow ended up breastfeeding my son far longer than I wanted to.
He has never slept through the night, in fact he's never slept longer than 2 hours. He constantly wants to feed all night & I'm at my wits end.

I just want sleep! And my boobs back!

How do I stop him breastfeeding, as I think that's the only reason he wakes so often. How do I make him sleep longer than 20 minutes?

I know I've probably allowed this to go on for too long but I work full time & constantly feel like a zombie.

Help ��

JollyJingle Thu 25-Dec-14 18:28:35

Don't worry, it happens more often than you think!

If he co sleeps then you have two problems to tackle. Getting him into his own bed and stopping the night feeds.

He does of course wake up to feed because it's a habit he has been in since babyhood and just not stopped.

If it's just the night feeding then cold turkey is best. (Unintentional seasonal pun!) Arrange a week or at least 4 days off and explain to him in the run up that night time booby is stopping. He can still have a feed before he goes to sleep but not under any circumstance sleep at the boob. That just perpetuates the boob-to-sleep that he goes for in the night. Remind him no boob in the night. Night is for sleeping.

When he wakes in the night, give him a cuddle and say no booby, sleep time. If he cries cuddle him, put him back to bed and just say less and less and interact less. Wear a right fitting pyjama top to stop the rummaging!

It works and is surprisingly easy but never give in once. If you do all the work you've done will be wasted. If he cries don't worry, it never did any harm in this circumstance but there isn't a magic wand I'm afraid. You have an upset child for a couple of nights and then peace.

SupSlick Thu 25-Dec-14 18:41:57

Oh god thank you for your quick response!
The past few weeks I've been telling him that Father Christmas takes the milk away but swaps them for big boy presents.
He's repeated this back to me a few times so I know he understands. It's just I'm scared I'll crack & like you said we'll be like 10 steps back then!
I feel like a total Scrooge doing this at Christmas but I can't take it anymore.
At some point id like to maybe have a relationship & I don't want to have a breastfeeding 10-year old or something!

KittyandTeal Thu 25-Dec-14 18:44:00

I weaned my dd at about 20mo. I explained for a few days before that in x sleeps there would be no more mummy milk. On the day I reminded her no more milk tonight. Then stuck to it! I did have a beaker of water for her in case she was thirsty.

I also did a sticker chart but she didn't need it in the end. After a couple if grizzles she gave up.

I moved her into her room at 22 mo in a similar way except I also got her new bedding and 'grown up' pjs that she could pick. I ended up spending a few nights on the floor of her room on a camping mattress bit didn't let her back into bed with us. Kept telling her she was too big (which is true)

She's now sleeping through most nights at 27 mo. It's a bit of a long haul though but great once you get there then get knocked up again and end up only having 2 months of full nights before getting so uncomfortable that you can't sleep properly!

MoreSnowPlease Thu 25-Dec-14 19:07:05

We did it at this age. We Co slept as well. Instead of feeding I talked to him and said he was a very good boy; it was ok, no more feeding but could have cuddles and rocking (sitting on bed) he was angry first night for 4 hours. Second night for an hour, third night half hour. The hard bit was I thought he wouldn't go to sleep without feeding. I fact I remember now I still fed him to sleep and I the morning so that he had something to look forward to. It helped with stopping in night as I could say he would have it in the morning. I had to be very specific about when so we bought a gro clock and set it so the sin came up at something like 5 so he could see it was going to happen. Then gradually made it later. The a few months after stopping night feeds I had to go on medication which meant I couldn't feed him at all. I explained that to him and he accepted it and now a month after that he's going to sleep with just cuddles and all walking in the night but will happily cuddle back to sleep. It's much better. I think it was a great age to stop because I can talk to him about it and he understands. He's also in his own bed and room now with no trouble at all.

My advice is tackle it in small, gradual steps and explain it to him but be very firm about your boundaries and stay calm throughout this was very important.

Good luck

MoreSnowPlease Thu 25-Dec-14 19:10:36

*still waking

Lots of typos sorry but hope it makes sense!

Woodenheart Thu 25-Dec-14 19:11:28

OP Im in the same boat, Im on the bed now, feeding, I'm exhausted, run down & a LP,

flowers for you, Im no help though, sorry!

JollyJingle Thu 25-Dec-14 19:27:41

It does feel like you're going to climb a mountain when you start and you're at the foot of it, but a couple of days later you are half way up and can see the summit!

It's actually not that difficult and once it's done you will ask yourself why you didn't do it sooner!

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